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Six-Year-Old Fights For The Right To Potty At Her School

When you've got to go, you've got to go. This is especially true when you're just six years old. At that age, you haven't been out of diapers for very long and have a very tiny bladder. It's common for little kids to have accidents even when they have access to a bathroom. Imagine how it feels for a 6-year-old school kid when they don't have access to the facilities, though.

This is the struggle of Emma Smith, a first grader at Glen Arden Elementary public school in western North Carolina. Emma is a transgendered girl, so she's not allowed to use the girls' bathroom at her school. With Emma being a transgendered girl, she doesn't fit in the boys' bathrooms, either. This leaves her in a precarious position.

When Emma has to go to the bathroom, it's a problem. When she came home one day with her clothes and shoes soaked in urine, her parents were heartbroken.

When former President Barack Obama granted bathroom rights to transgendered kids across the country, kids like Emma finally found some much-needed relief. When President Donald Trump was elected and did away with those rights, children like Emma were left with little to do but hold it in and hope they make it to the end of the day.

North Carolina was one of the first states to jump on the bandwagon of denying transgendered peoples' rights. With House Bill 2 and House Bill 142, the state targeted transgendered individuals in an attempt to keep them out of public places - or at least, out of public bathrooms.

Amy and Kevin Smith have been fighting for their daughter's rights. They say that Emma has been a girl since she was born, despite the fact that her birth certificate labels her a 'male' child.

“She always had girl tendencies,” Kevin told HuffPost. “She’s always been petite, she’s always been sweet like a little girl. Before we ever realized, she was always wanting pink and girls’ toys, dolls. We didn’t really know what was going on with it, we just thought, ‘Pink, blue, what makes a difference? We don’t care.’”

“She began calling me ‘he,’ We thought she was just really confused and we needed to explain to her the difference in gender. I said, ‘Let’s explain this: Boys’ pronouns are he and him. Girls’ are she and her.’ But Emma kept saying, ‘You’re he!’" her mom says. "And then one day she said, “Well, if I’m a boy, you’re a boy.”

At first, Amy and Kevin gave school officials a little too much credit. They optimistically thought they'd explain the situation to the school and find support and compassion; instead, it's been nothing but one battle after another.

“It just turned into a mess,” Kevin said. “They wouldn’t [call her Emma], they refused to do it, the teachers wouldn’t do it. So we had to get a meeting with the principal and formally tell them, ‘Her name is going to be Emma.’ But the teacher she was with from day one disagreed with it, and expressed her feelings to Emma daily. Emma would say she had girl hair and the teacher would tell her, ‘No, you’ve got boy hair. You’re a boy.’”

These struggles were bad enough, but not being able to use the bathroom is much worse; it's embarrassing and robs the poor child of her dignity.

″We have to follow HB 2,” the principal told Amy and Kevin. “And that states... she has to use the boys’ bathroom. And that’s all we can offer.”

Source: HuffPost
Photo: HuffPost

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